Though the Old Testament has a million rules for not touching certain things, and our culture tells us to touch anything and anyone
we want, Jesus shows us a better way—in the New Testament, he touches, and he shows us that touch can be good, godly, and even ministering in our lives and in our churches.
Whether it’s fearful side hugs on one side or sexual abuse on the other, both the culture and the church aren’t doing very well with touch. Singles are staying single longer, dating is wrought with angst over purity, and marriages struggle to not interpret all forms of touch as sexual. Even the Bible seems to have endless rules about not touching things. There is simply no place where touch doesn’t seem threatened or threatening.
But a curious thing happens when Jesus comes into His ministry: He touches. Jesus touches the sick and the outcast, the bleeding and the unclean.
What could it mean for families, singles, marriages, churches, communities, and the world to have healthy, pure, faithful, ministering touch? Somewhere in the mess of our assumptions and fears about touch, there is something beautiful and good and God-given. As Jesus can show us, there is ministry in touching.